For my PhD, because I lived close to the Caird Library at the National Maritime Museum, I spent a lot of time looking at the Lieutenant’s Logs in their collection. However, for the sake of being somewhat thorough, I also looked at a Captain’s log at the National Archive.
The single Captain’s log that I looked at was the log of Captain Charles Stevens of the Portland, between October 1744 and July 1748. I chose this period because I wanted to see if the Royal Navy still celebrated the birthdays of Charles II and the Restoration so many years afterwards (and the answer is.. apparently yes). This is a decent collection- I took 175 photos of this log, which was in one volume but in several folders bound together. It’s fairly clear to read, but unfortunately the light wasn’t the best for the photos.
As you can see, these are very similar to the Lieutenant’s logs I’ve described in other posts. This is an absolutely fascinating resource, although the daily details are really rather limited. I also have 174 images from this volume, which should provide a lengthy sample. This is also a very interesting period because it features the Royal Navy’s first lengthy war since 1715, and so provides some real insight into the day-to-day life of warships in active service during wartime.